Inspires the art in every kid
We just came back from a trip in the US visiting my husband’s family and combined it with a long-due visit to one of my favorite cities: New York City. It was our first time in NYC with a child and it was new territory finding fun kid-friendly activities for Mila. So, one morning we headed out west towards the Hudson river in Soho to hit the Children’s Museum of the Arts.
A hands-on art museum dedicated to engaging young artists (from 0 to 15 years) in viewing, making, and sharing art. It’s a wonderful, bright place filled with creativity, talented staff and inspiration EVERYWHERE. We came for the WEE arts class, a drop-in class for families with artists under five years old who can explore creative materials and techniques, be free and curious - all in a stimulating environment. The WEE at class room is a big room divided into different art stations, each focused on different materials and activities. Some of them were:
- PINCH-SQUOOCH-ROLL - table filled with homemade play dough in all possible colors and fun materials to combine with play dough
- DOT, DOT, LINE - at this station kids are using markers etc on colored papers to allow for the natural progression from scribbling, to mastering shapes, to creating the human face
- FLUBBER - my hands down favorite discovery: Think of a stretchy, weird, gooey material you can throw against a canvas and which creates new shapes and art once dried. It feels fresh and cooling in your hand. You can’t stop playing with it. Contact me for the recipe.
- BLOCKS - huge building blocks to engage the three-dimensional thinking
- PAINT - Red, Yellow, Blue and You: All sessions include the joys of mixing colors, brushing, smooshing, and paint play.
- GLUE - Gluing shapes, textures, found materials, sparkly objects, buttons and more…or just watch it drip (Mila’s favorite part!)
The class ended with 20 minutes filled with music, drumming and story-time. After each WEE art class the kids are allowed to go to the BALL POND, to let out some more energy.
Some regular info on the museum: The CMA is a nonprofit arts space comprised of a fine arts studio, early childhood studio and Media Lab, an art gallery, two classrooms; and a ball pond. Depending on the age of the kids you are visiting the museum with they have a MEDIA LAB (families can learn how to animate or watch a short film made by CMA students), a CLAY BAR (mould creatures–real or imaginary–out of modeling clay), a SOUND BOOTH (record a song, speech, or score a soundtrack) or the FINE ARTS STUDIO (paint, draw, sculpt, or sew an original masterpiece) – all besides the regular gallery space for exhibits etc.
The CMA offers a big selection of other classes and after school programs, which are some of the best in the city. Check their website for the day’s activity, many of them are even free.